Monday, June 18, 2007

EMPIREVANGELISM

I don’t see much difference between Evangelism and Imperialism. The xenophobia of being aware of the frightened limits of ones culture that must be lied about to maintain control of either when provoked by independent thinkers, other national agendas and the fear they set loose. All too often the innocent reminder is taken to be the repository of such malicious suspicions and duly assigned membership in the latest axis of evil, so jealous, we are told, they are of the truer truth of our freedom to indulge in consumer driven glut … whether they want it or not. Feeling fear of the unknown may be understood to be its own punishment — anything more curious only lends value to wisdom’s evolution. How, in the name of love, does not knowing something make it an evil deserving conversion, conscription or conquest. That’s how governments and most Christians act and they hardly know their enemy beyond their need to be annexed into the xenophobic exclusivity of Christianity to “make the world safe for America.” Which came first the priest inserting himself between individuals and their “inner sense” to reap the guilty tithe on its way to God's heavenly bank or megalomaniacal control-junkie politicians inserting themselves between sheep addicted to fear in the present and the better life they keep promising, or else … you're either a sinner or a terrorist. Get over it.

In recent days my daughter has found new vigor from her close encounter of the Jesus kind which, her being of my genetic disposition, has driven her to test it on what must be her idea of the ultimate heathen, so to speak, me. While she believed me especially adverse to Christianity, I pleaded equal opportunity religious apathy. Just as I noted then, Buddhism gets my nod because it doesn’t require belief, I note now that Christianity is the only religion so exclusive as to insist on being the only truth (each of its umptydozen exclusive variations, including my sister's) and driven to convert the world to make it unanimous (to finally believe it themselves, maybe). This post is the result of contemplating her concerns about me roasting in hell and my concerns about US imperialism doing the same thing to earth, and how, although she claims to have her own personal interpretation of the Bible and Jesus’ love, not to be confused with all the evidence of intolerant atrocity in the history of Christianity, the one key element most obnoxious about that history, evangelism, is her one key method of expressing her own belief and regret that we won't be in heaven together. Give me a fucking break. Whatever such truth is, it must be artifice if it requires exclusive belief, faith, trust, and a sorely, poorly envisioned one if it needs world wide allegiance for well meaning Christians to find peace on earth. Truth doesn't need belief, it has always been everyones experience beyond our faithful, trusty wall of filters requiring constant maintenance following belief manual.

Love doesn't hurt and truth is in plain sight for everyone. Exclusivity harms and hides both for the excluder.

15 comments:

Lilwave said...

What you failed to realize is the reason I shared my beliefs with you was not so much to save you, but to save myself. I had only hoped that you could accept me for who I am but at least now I know. Either way, truth has saved me. It is just so unfortunate that you could not step outside of your own existance to really hear about mine. You keep your reality and I'll keep mine. In mine, I'll always love you but I'll always love God too. If you are all the things you claim to be then why would you expect me to be like you? I'll say nothing more since my words on this subject are considered preaching where yours is "independent thinking." I'm over it as you suggested. Good advice, you should try it.

"No man can be brave who thinks pain the greatest evil; nor temperate, who considers pleasure the highest god."

gregra&gar said...

Nor wise, who shuns the reach of either.

karoline said...

“The responsibility of tolerance lies with those who have the wider vision”

George Eliot

{{{g}}}{{{l}}}

k

Lilwave said...

A vision of tolerance is not tolerance at all. Until you step out of your comfort zone and put your vision into action it is nothing more than words and quotes.

Lilwave said...

Actually if you really want practice tolerance, you must step away from your own vision and experience someone elses reality.

gregra&gar said...

For someone who is "over it," Lilwave, you still seem so worked up that you are now critiquing my friends contributed quotes of poetry to make them fit your feelings of not being tolerated.

Read your last comment a few more times and then ask yourself which takes more tolerance: person A, who would let everyone believe as they wish so long as they can do it without insisting on agreement to be happy or person B, who claims direct contact to the only possible truth, no two ways about it, and a ticket to heaven inaccessible to nonbelievers like person A?

Lilwave said...

Lol, you think so little of me that all you can see is that I was only out to judge someone? How very sad. I was just sharing my views on how I think people in general must try to find tolerance based off of the quote that was given. Of course you would see it as me suggesting that everyone but myself should do that. I struggle with tolerance every day but at least I'm trying. I was not trying to offend you or your friend. Like I said before, I'll never be anything but preachy as far as your concerned so I'm signing off for the last time. Now, I'm more than over it.
Love always,
Heather

gregra&gar said...

When speaking of "people in general" it helps to speak of them in the rhetorical "one" rather than the personal "you," as you did throughout your two short comments. It helps in sounding more philosophical (general) than preachy (personal). For example:
That one may assume by my reply or it's question that I was offended would appear to imply that one also assumed I am extremely intolerant while ones own offended self terminates communication out of some gesture of superior tolerance, I suppose.

For me, tolerance is like the dimmer switch on a light bulb, or the sphincter action of the iris in that it shades the brilliance of the present, censors the direct experience of infinity to the limits of acceptability and spring loaded shut to the beyond. It tends to disappear when my ego is not around … then I don't have any tolerance or intolerance or need to weigh anything.

I'm sorry you are leaving, you are always welcome back to this shelter from the norm, the equal opportunity offense station, stop in and fill up with insulted rage, it'll keep you going all day and you can't beat the price.

Lilwave said...

As if your one to give me a freaking philosophical lesson. You try to slap me in the face by posting a blog telling your readers your twisted version of who I am as if you actually know me.
Your ego has truly blinded you. So much so that you choose to teach me a lesson rather than access to your delete key and get rid of anything you considered an insult to your friend. Ahhh, but where is the fun in that, right? Thanks for doing us both a favor.
Please don't insult me with your sarcastic "sorry your leaving" crap. We both know you don't apologize for anything that you have chosen for your life.
I hate to break the news to you but you have never filled me with rage....EVER. The only thing you have managed to fill me with is a broken heart throughout much of my life.

gregra&gar said...

That you think my sorrow over your leaving is in any way an apology for my actions is another prime example of how you paint the the world with your own reflection. I am sorry your heart is so on your sleeve that my contemplations on the identity of evangelism and imperialism with the example of your recent campaign to convert me is seen by you as an attempt to "try to slap me in the face by posting a blog telling your readers your twisted version of who I am as if you actually know me." I have never claimed to know you — the only things I have said about you are descriptions of your overt evangelism conveyed through your own words. I would love to hear how, instead of trying to save me, all this has been about your trying to save yourself. There is no way I can apologize for breaking your, or any other, heart so full of such fragile qualifications for the acceptable forms of love although I can sincerely sorry that seems to be the case. Your interpretation of my words is what insults you, not what they intended when I typed them. And so it goes.

Lilwave said...

"your recent campaign to convert me"
And THAT is where your ego still has you blinded. Everything that I said to you about my Christianity was to try to understand why you were so against it. I wanted to see if it were possible for you to accept me for who I am completely. Not some watered down version of me swallowing my own beliefs just to keep peace with you. You spend much more time, "trying to save" the world from any belief other than your own. Your potato God is not accepted by me no more that my Holy God is excepted by you. Read this Empirevangelism blog out loud while looking in a mirror. Now try to imagine telling me this while actually looking into my eyes. You'll discover who the real preacher is. I never preached to you.
As far as your interest in how I saved myself, we both know you could care less. You're again just being the usual sarcastic person I seem to keep running into. I saved myself by facing the fear of loosing you by sharing my truth about my own existance. As if I ever really had a Dad. That was only an illusion I held onto since I was a child. Time for me to grow up I guess or as you put it, "Get over it and give you a break".
Bye

gregra&gar said...

If I'm not savable, worthless?

You cannot accept that I love you without qualification because I don't accept the belief system you have recently chosen to wear in the most lurid colors it comes in.

The idea that you take my metaphor about eyes on a potato to be about some god for you to reject or accept speaks volumes about how tightly wound about getting me to accept your own special god you've become. I don't accept the idea of a master creator of the universe from whom we must receive blessings to have a complete life, be it Allah or Jehovah or Beelzebub. I can accept that others may find the answers to all their questions from such beliefs, and more power to them. I'm sure some of my friends feel that way just from their serene demeanor, but I cannot accept anyone's condemning me to hell for not accepting their god as my own!

If, as you seem to be insisting, you and this seven day wonder, creator of and watcher over all that has ever existed since way back in 4000 BC have become so inextricably identical and interwoven that rejecting one rejects all, have it your way.

I think Jesus would reject the Bible and all its thumpers

I love you. I just don't like your outfit.

Later …

karoline said...

lilwave, i'm sorry i interjected myself into your convo. upsetting you wasn't my intent and fwiw, i was not insulted by your comment.

sometimes we just need to love eachother for who we are, unconditionally. we need to tolerate eachothers viewpoints and not place restrictions on our relationships.

you are so lucky to have someone here who loves you unconditionally, i would give anything for a chance to exchange beliefs with my father..

please..you both might decide that religious beliefs are not worth debating about...agree to disagree and do not throw away what could be a beautiful relationship...

life is much too short..

{{lilwave}}

k
:)

gregra&gar said...

What Karoline said — thank you.

The part about life being too short is relative to ones idea of beyond death and proximity to its probability (age).

karoline said...

there aren't any guarantees that your webs will cross in another time or place...today is the day to make it right..

{{g}}

k
:)